The Nigeria Customs Service (NCS), Seme Border command has intercepted and seized a total of two thousand, one hundred and thirty-one (2, 131) 50kg bags of rice valued at twenty-three million, nine hundred and seventy-three thousand, nine hundred and fifty naira (N23, 973, 950. 00).
The Command’s Public Relations Officer (PRO), Mr. Selechang Taupyen who disclosed this in a press release he issued in Lagos Wednesday said the imported rice was smuggled through Ere-Creeks which border Lagos and Ogun state.
He informed that the rice which was smuggled through the creek was stocked in an uncompleted building when men of the command got the information and stormed the Ere Creek – Ikoga for immediate evacuation of the seized product to Seme Command.
Taupyen stated that a search through the command’s database showed that a seizure of this magnitude was the first of its kind in recent times which according to him would go down memory lane as a record that would not be easily forgotten stating that it was also indeed heartwarming to note that a seizure of this magnitude without any casualty is indeed a clear demonstration of the verse wealth of experience brought to bear by the principled, serious minded and undeterred leader who dares to succeed at all cost.
According to him,” The Seme Area Command of the Nigeria Customs Service has once again proved beyond reasonable doubt her total commitment to the implementation and enforcement of the Federal Government fiscal policies to its logical conclusion.
“The Border Command made the greatest seizure of the century in recent times as the entire border communities were dumfounded seeing the convoy of twelve (12) trucks containing seized rice driven into the Command premises for onward trans-loading into the government warehouse. Counting of the smuggled product reveals the quantity to be Two Thousand One Hundred and Thirty One (2,131 X 50kg) bags of rice with a Duty Paid Value (DPV) of N23, 973, 750.00. The imported rice was smuggled through Ere-Creeks which border Lagos and Ogun state.
“The application of diplomacy in handling seizure of this magnitude from a known notorious end without crisis is the subject of discussion in many quarters who refers to this subtle diplomacy as Dimka’s magic”.
Taupyen quoted the CAC as having attributed the success recorded in the seizure to the dedicated sharing of coordinated and credible information among officers and men of the Command, as well as the unflinching support of the Comptroller General of Customs Col. Hammed Ibrahim Ali (Rtd) who he said had zero tolerance for smuggling activities that destroy the Nigeria economy.
He pointed out that Comptroller Dimka re-iterated that it was glaring that the new leadership in Seme border had re-invigorated the enforcement unit and intensify the enforcement of government fiscal policies to meet the current dynamics of smuggling through the creeks adding that the resolve by the smugglers to use the water ways was because the roads and highways in Seme border were well fortified against smuggling activities by officers and men of the Command.
“I am here in person as a practical vanguard of change that desire to set the right precedent and lead by example’. He carefully supervised the evacuation process; ensured the proper handling and usage of arms among officers under the tense atmosphere to ensure a hitch free operation without casualty. He also ensured that the entire seized product were monitored and transferred to the government warehouse to perfect the exemplary leadership qualities of a proper enforcement office” he quoted Dimka.
He recalled that a fortnight ago, the CAC eulogized the enforcement unit of the Command for their unprecedented performance and asked them to intensify more efforts in the suppression of smuggling activities along the international border.
“The Comptroller emphasized that investigation is on-going to unravel the perpetrators of this act and to ensure that they face the consequences of their action.
“He warned that the Command will continue to work round the clock to degrade all smuggling activities across the frontier, since the Command has all the necessary logistics and support to combat smuggling activities at the border.
“He concluded that the Command is committed to succeed and will not relent in her effort until the needed revenue is generated, smuggling is suppressed to the barest minimum and legitimate trade is facilitated.
“However, he commended the synergy of the Nigeria Army (243 Battalion &Topo FER) and the Nigeria Police who co-operated immensely with officers and men of the NCS when they were called for reinforcement at the scene of the seizure”, Taupyen stated.
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